Ernst-August Seyfarth

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Chelicerates constitute a basic arthropod group with fossil representatives from as early as the Cambrian period. Embryonic development and the subdivision of the segmented body region into a prosoma and an opisthosoma are very similar in all extant chelicerates. The mode of head segmentation, however, has long been controversial. Although all other(More)
The lyriform slit-sense organ on the patella of the spider, Cupiennius salei, consists of seven or eight slits, with each slit innervated by a pair of mechanically sensitive neurons. Mechanotransduction is believed to occur at the tips of the dendrites, which are surrounded by a Na+-rich receptor lymph. We studied the ionic basis of sensory transduction in(More)
This review focuses on the structure and function of a single mechanoreceptor organ in the cuticle of spiders. Knowledge emerging from the study of this organ promises to yield general principles that can be applied to mechanosensation in a wide range of animal systems. The lyriform slit sense organ on the antero-lateral leg patella of the spider Cupiennius(More)
The wandering spider Cupiennius salei Keys uses idiothetic orientation, i.e., memorized information about its own previous movements, to retrieve lost prey. Spiders, having been chased away from a prey fly, return to the capture site (the goal) over a distance of more than 75 cm even though all external orientation cues were precluded. This behavior and its(More)
The mechanosensory organs of arachnids receive diverse peripheral inputs. Little is known about the origin, distribution, and function of these chemical synapses, which we examined in lyriform slit sense organ VS-3 of the spider Cupiennius salei. The cuticular slits of this organ are each associated with two large bipolar mechanosensory neurons with(More)
A site-directed antibody was used immunocytochemically to measure the distribution of sodium channels in the tissues of a spider mechanoreceptor organ. The VS-3 slit sense organ contains 7-8 pairs of bipolar sensory neurons; these neurons are representative of a wide range of arthropod mechanoreceptors. Sensory transduction is thought to occur at the tips(More)
Cupiennius is a genus of hunting spiders with seven established species. One of these (C. salei) has been used in laboratory research for many years. Here we report on the geographic distribution of the genus and some characteristics of its habitat. (1) The genus is Central American. Its range is from the state of Veracruz in Mexico in the north to Panama(More)
1. We have developed an isolated mechanoreceptor-organ preparation in which the intact sensory structures are available for mechanical stimulation and electrical recording. The anterior lyriform slit sense organ on the patella of the spider, Cupiennius salei Keys., consists of seven or eight cuticular slits, each innervated by a pair of large bipolar(More)
1. Intracellular microelectrodes recorded the receptor potential and receptor current in the neurons of spider slit sense organs during mechanical stimulation of the slits. 2. Mechanical stimulation produced two patterns of action potential discharge, corresponding to the two groups of neurons described previously by electrical stimulation. 3. Tetrodotoxin(More)
Two types of sensory organs in crustaceans and arachnids, the various mechanoreceptors of spiders and the crustacean muscle receptor organs (MRO), receive extensive efferent synaptic innervation in the periphery. Although the two sensory systems are quite different-the MRO is a muscle stretch receptor while most spider mechanoreceptors are cuticular(More)